HBV recurrence higher in Caucasians compared to Asian- and African-Americans -- further study needed
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 1.5 to 2 million Americans are infected with the hepatitis B virus (HBV). Prior studies have shown there to be significant racial differences in access to and outcomes of liver transplantation. Recently, doctors from across the U.S. conducted a multicenter retrospective-prospective study of the waitlist status and outcomes of liver transplant patients with HBV infection. This study led by Natalie Bzowej from California Pacific Medical Center and Anna Lok from the University of Michigan and funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), found there to be similar waitlist and post-transplant outcomes among Asian Americans, African Americans, and Caucasians with HBV. These research findings appear in the September issue of Liver Transplantation, a journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, published by Wiley-Blackwell.
Of the total number of study participants, 170 received transplantations between 2001and 2007. The probability of post-transplant survival at 5 years was 94% for African Americans, 85% for Asian Americans, and 89% for Caucasians. "Analysis indicated that HCC recurrence was the only predictor of post-transplant mortality while race, indication for transplant, and HBV recurrence were not," the authors explained.
Results from NIH HBV liver transplant study indicate similar waitlist and post-transplant outcomes across the three racial groups studied. "More study is necessary to determine whether the disparity between African Americans, Asians, and Caucasians in outcomes of liver transplantation for HBV persists in the most recent era," concluded Dr. Howell. ###
Article: "Liver Transplantation Outcomes among Caucasians, Asian Americans and African Americans with Hepatitis B," Natalie Bzowej, Steven-Huy Han, Bulent Degertekin, Emmet Keeffe, Sukru Emre, Robert Brown, Rajender Reddy, Anna Lok, Liver Transplantation, September 2009.
Editorial: "Racial Disparities in Liver Transplantation for Hepatitis B: To Be or Not to Be," Charles D. Howell, MD, Liver Transplantation, September 2009.
Contact: Dawn Peters firstname.lastname@example.org Web: Wiley-Blackwell